Story last updated at 5/9/2012 - 1:17 pm
My AmeriCorps service has helped me by giving me career direction and employable skills. After graduating college, the transition to the work force may not have been as successful without it. It made the transition easy while gaining leadership and experience.
I joined AmeriCorps as a SAGA Alaska Service Corps Leader in 2005, fresh out of college. It was a full term position working with Alaska public land management agencies on back logged projects. I worked as a leader of a team to ensure the safety and the completion of the projects. As I began my service I had thought little of how the term would help me but knew I wanted to make a difference for others. I was reserved, self-conscious and had no idea what I was going to do with my life. By the time I left SAGA I developed leadership, confidence, big ideas and aspirations about life. After reflecting on this term of service I knew I wanted to continue on the path of service and bring my knowledge I gained to other communities.
In 2007 I joined the Emergency Response Team at AmeriCorps St. Louis. I used the skill set I obtained in Alaska on a daily basis. My second term focused on assisting communities that had experienced loss from natural disasters. I learned to be a part of a team in a larger capacity and worked on goals to better the quality of life for those devastated by disaster. I truly felt I made a difference in the lives of others and was less focused on my own gain.
I feel so strongly about AmeriCorps and how the programs involved with it bring positive change to the lives of members and those they help. Member service creates a giant domino effect. Service can be contagious and the effects of AmeriCorps Member actions on those they serve last long after a term of service is complete.
I am an AmeriCorps Alumni who works for an AmeriCorps grantee because I believe in the mission of service. I also get to continue to serve by giving others the opportunity to serve. I will carry the commitment with me this year and beyond. I am an AmeriCorps member and I am going to get things done.